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348                            THE GAY GENIUS

seven commentators, forty-seven in the northern Sung and thirty-one
in the southern Sung are known to history.

Towards the end of the twelfth century, Shih Yuanchih was com-
piling his famous chronological edition known as Shih's Commentary,
No. 7, published with a preface by the poet Lu Yu, dated 1209. A
revised edition of this SAiA's Commentary was published by Cheng Yu,
No. 8, with a preface dated 1262.


ShiA's Commentary seems to have gone out of circulation in the
Ming period, while popular editions of the poet's collected poems,
arranged according to thirty or seventy-eight subjects, continued to be
 known as Wang's Commentary. Chinese philological research was at
its height in the Manchu dynasty; and many old editions came to light,-
particularly in the nation-wide scouring for ancient scripts and rare
books in connection with the great Szeku Chuanshu imperial library
under Emperor Chienlung. Under Emperor Kangshi appeared the first
modern critical edition, by Sung Lo, who had discovered an incom-
plete edition of the Shih's Commentary. The work of editing and re-
arranging the poems chronologically was entrusted to Shao Changheng
and two other scholars, and the Table of Chronological Events, No.
43, was also revised. Published with a preface dated 1699, this claimed
to be Shih's Commentary revised, but became known as the Shao's
Commentary t No. 9. Certain poems not included in previous collections
were added. Another great scholar, Cha Shenshing, published his
edition, No. 10, in 1702, and amended Shao's errors.

Under Emperor Chienlung, the learned editor-in-chief of the im-
perial library Szefyt CAuangsAu, Chi Yun, a great admirer of Su, issued
an edition of Su's poems in 1771, No. n, appreciating or evaluating
each from a literary point of view, and making the best text by a wise
comparison of different versions. At this time a great scholar, writer,
and collector, Weng Fangkang, had obtained the ancient copy of ShiA's
Commentary formerly belonging to Sung Lo, and this was such a great
event in his life that he named his studio henceforth "the Su Studio".
The portrait of Su reproduced in this book bears Weng's autograph
on top. In .1782 he published his Supplementary Comments, No. 12.
In 1793 followed the more important edition by Feng Yingliu, No. 13,
who had obtained a copy of the ancient Five CQmmentators and a
Yuan edition of the Wang's Commentary. In these successive editions
the editors often disagreed; No. 10 tried to correct No. 9, No. 12 tried
to correct Nos. 9 and 10, and No*. 13 tried to correct all predecessors.
In general, the chronological arrangement in the Shih's Commentary
was corroborated.